To the Far Corners

Having a few early morning errands to run before heading to the office, I was on the road about an hour earlier than normally, and for sure, it was pretty creepy while driving on vacant roads with a fog looking too much like a graveyard haze.   I was surprised to see it well into the 30’s by mid-afternoon, and likely due to the sun finally deciding push aside the cloud cover.  It’s supposed to be even warmer tomorrow, which will be just fine by me because I’m on a burn to get 321 S. Carolina sold which I’m planning on having open to the public tomorrow afternoon.

The owner has removed more furniture which is a good thing because I believe too many of today’s buyers aren’t been able to look past period furnishings.  I’m going to ask one of my clients who deals in used furniture if he’d have time to stop by and see if there’s anything of interest to him because the owner is definitely willing to sell what’s still there.  He did manage to sell the bedroom set which I thought to be the best built, which indicated someone else was of a similar belief.

Speaking of used furniture.  I’m convinced there’s a great need for a more up-scale used furniture store in our Historic Downtown.  I don’t want to sound like I’m bashing the other stores that sell it, but I personally wouldn’t go to any of them because they have such a mix-match of crap furniture over-powering a few good pieces.  Of course one of the main reasons I don’t like going to those places is the “smell” that hits me upon entering which likely comes from the used upholstered furniture they have scattered about.  With our nationwide bedbug problem, I’d never buy any used upholstered furniture unless I knew exactly where it came from.  The thought of bringing home a nest of bedbugs in a chair or sofa would be enough to send me into orbit.  And don’t ever think Mason City doesn’t have bedbugs because there’ve been enough cases reported to cause alarm.  And remember, if there are reported cases, just think how many have gone unreported because just like several generations back, having bedbugs is a stigmatization for a given family’s household practices.

Early this morning I showed a rental home to an interesting chap. While visiting with him, he proceeded to tell me that from the time he graduated from college, he’s been working under contract for a company that’s sent him to the far corners of our country.  He’s now on longer stays to where they’re one to two years long, and then posted at another far away job site afterwards.

He came right out and talked about what he does in his spare time which also includes working on a book he’s going to publish which is all about the people he’s met and the places he’s lived.  He must’ve sensed that I didn’t think that to be that much of an accomplishment when saying, “My book will be speaking truthfully of some of the strangest happenings that occurred in the towns and cities I’ve lived, and especially some of the people I had to work with.”  I teasingly asked, “Are you part gypsy?”  He laughed and said, “No, but you’re not the first person that’s asked me that.”   While driving back to the office I thought about my encounter with him and decided he’s one of our modern-day explorers who’ll likely never settle down because there’ll always be another bridge to cross and more people to meet.

One of my afternoon appointments was to show 24 – 11th St. NE to a couple who’ve been watching it since I listed it.  I believe they were very impressed with what they saw and hopefully they’ll be calling back for another viewing.  I was touched by a comment from one of them as they were walking out which was, “Thank you for showing it to us, and hopefully I’m being politically correct by saying that you’ve been a perfect gentleman while showing it to us.”   I thank her for the comment while wishing them the best. As I was locking up, I thought to myself how much I work at not being pushy with buyers because I personally don’t like it.  There’ve been too many times in the past when a salesperson thought I was a push-over until discovering I simply walk away due to their un-necessary tactics used when trying to get me to buy something.

I’m hoping you all have some fun things planned for this weekend, and if it’s sunny, try to get out and enjoy this welcome break from those cold, gray and windy days we’ve had to endure. Winter’s in North Iowa can be delightful as long as it’s above freezing, the sun is shining, and not a whisper of wind blowing.

Tonight’s one-liner is:  If you plan on being anything less than your capabilities, you’ll probably be unhappy all the days of your life.

Joe Chodur

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